I only saw [Buddy Holly] on the London Palladium [TV show] … He was great. It was the first time I saw a Fender guitar being played. While the singer sang! (Also the 'secret' of the drumming on Peggy Sue was revealed - live).
The name BEATLES was directly inspired by CRICKETS. I think the greatest effect was on the songwriting (especially mine and Paul's). We [performed] practically everything he put out, what he did with three chords made a songwriter out of me. He was the first guy I ever saw with a capo, he made it OK to wear glasses. I was Buddy Holly.
John Lennon answering a Sept 1974 questionnaire by Jim Dawson The Elvis Forum. I've edit some of Lennon's punctuation for clarity and my own sanity!
Lennon quoted/paraphrased Holly's song (written by Felice and Boudleaux Bryant) in Dear Prudence
Dear Prudence: “The sun is up, the sky is blue/It's beautiful and so are you”
Raining In My Heart: “The sun is out, the sky is blue/There's not a cloud to spoil the view”
One of the greatest people for me was Buddy Holly, because first of all he sang, wrote his own tunes and was a guitar player, and he was very good. Buddy Holly was the first time I heard A to F#m. Fantastic—he was opening up new worlds there. And then A to F, A, D, E, F and F#m. He was sensational. I no longer had the fear of changing from A to F.
Quoted in Mark Lewisohn: The Beatles - All These Years: Volume One: Tune In (p.150)
Buddy Holly/The Crickets songs covered by The Beatles
Words of Love - Beatles for Sale
Crying, Waiting, Hoping - Live at the BBC
That'll Be the Day - Anthology 1
More Under The Influence posts
Further Reading: Aaron Krerowicz: Influence of Buddy Holly on The Beatles
Join the mailing list to get the free, exclusive, Beatles Songwriting Academy podcast!